Review: 12 Years A Slave

October 18, 2013 3:44:11 PM PDT
The year's best movie is also the toughest to watch.

"12 Years A Slave" takes its place in the pantheon of the best films ever made about man's inhumanity to man. It's an account of human-bondage so real and so painful, it was as if I was there witnessing these events in person.

The story of Solomon Northrup is all the more compelling because it happens to be true. He was a free man, a musician living with his family in Saratoga when he was lured to Washington D.C., then kidnapped and sold into slavery.

If "eyes are the windows into a man's soul," then Chiwetel Ejiofor provides a view that seems to go on forever because they contain the entire range of human emotion.

Michael Fassbender gives us evil in three dimensions: a slave owner who in lesser hands could have become a stock villain, instead of the terrifying brute that he is.

Only the arrival of Brad Pitt as a good guy late in the movie took me out of the action, though I couldn't argue with his character's conclusion.